Modern projects increasingly demand multi-disciplinary, integrated solutions , delivered in record time, after a competitive bidding process than invariably focuses on low cost rather than quality of data and a truly usable deliverable.
The availability of technology offering push button solutions is a dangerous trend, as a simple solution often comes at the cost of data quality, reliance on conversions and data that meshes poorly among its acquisition sources.
Several projects will be discussed, focusing on collection and integration of data from echo sounders, terrestrial scanners, conventional and GNSS based positioning systems, airborne LiDAR and imagery sensors and in one case, simple manual measurements to
overcome equipment performance that was seriously compromised by un-foreseeable site conditions. Key points of the discussion will include the need for clear, exacting identification of project horizontal and vertical datums, explicit
delineation of work areas, confirmation of final deliverable formats and follow-up after delivery to ensure usability, regardless of client specifications, or lack of feedback. This last milestone is critical, as usability is not a function of competence, QA teams thoroughness, or even the strict attention to project specifications, an ISO process, or minimum technical standards. If the client can't use the data due to
their own shortcomings, or struggles with the project, helping them recover from this situation goes a long way toward continuing a solid relationship with the client.